Word for the pleasure experienced in remembering?
March 17, 2008 9:36 PM   Subscribe

Word for taking pleasure in remembering something (not quite) forgotten?

You know that feeling. You try to remember the name of a song...the beats go like da-da-da-da, dadadadada-dah-dah-daaah-da-dah...but you can't quite remember!!! But finally, there's an epiphany! You remember that it's called...!

What word describes that moment of pleasure we experience in remember something we forget, but not quite?
posted by etoyasu to Grab Bag (18 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
As with most of the "Is there a word for this?" questions on AskMe, I'm pretty sure the answer is that there is no such word.
posted by jejune at 9:45 PM on March 17, 2008

Well, I've always called that epiphany "having the light bulb go on." I guess that doesn't refer specifically to the pleasurable aspect, though, just to the general feeling of "oh god well duh finally."
posted by nebulawindphone at 9:52 PM on March 17, 2008

En français, you would say: L'avoir sur le bout de la langue!
Also related: the word anamnesis can be used when a memory comes back to you, thanks to a particular situation (a sound, an image) which triggers it back.
posted by ddaavviidd at 10:10 PM on March 17, 2008

"then it clicked..."

people have understood me when i used that phrase to describe that experience in person, parsing it in text right now I don't really see how. Maybe just cause it isn't clicking right now?
posted by oblio_one at 10:23 PM on March 17, 2008

posted by bigmusic at 11:02 PM on March 17, 2008

epiphany for the moment of remembering, and nostalgia for the warm feeling the memory evokes.
posted by amyms at 11:06 PM on March 17, 2008

I usually say, "And then it came to me" for those tip-of-the-tongue solutions.
posted by cgc373 at 11:33 PM on March 17, 2008

posted by rhizome at 11:55 PM on March 17, 2008

Realization? Revelation? Eureka?
posted by Rhaomi at 12:12 AM on March 18, 2008

Response by poster: Upon discussion with my friend (who was an English major) the exclamation eureka! (though that's a Greek word!) comes close to what I'm looking for.
posted by etoyasu at 12:13 AM on March 18, 2008

I'm not answering the question, I'm saying: Eureka!
posted by prophetsearcher at 2:52 AM on March 18, 2008

"Reverie" is quite a good word to describe taking pleasure in recalling something - the bit that may immediately follow on from the epiphany.
posted by rongorongo at 4:42 AM on March 18, 2008

Reminisce: Indulge in enjoyable recollection of past events:
posted by indigo4963 at 6:57 AM on March 18, 2008



1: apprehension of a Platonic idea as if it had been known in a previous existence
2 a: recall to mind of a long-forgotten experience or fact
b: the process or practice of thinking or telling about past experiences
3 a: a remembered experience
b: an account of a memorable experience —often used in plural
4: something so like another as to be regarded as an unconscious repetition, imitation, or survival
posted by indigo4963 at 7:02 AM on March 18, 2008

Ah ha moment!
Sorry couldn't resist
posted by i_am_a_Jedi at 7:34 AM on March 18, 2008

To prove my point (the first comment), all these answers are wrong.

Epiphany, aha, eureka, clicked, etc. -- could be realizing something for the first time, not remembering something.

Nostalgia, reminiscence -- could be something you always had a clear memory of.
posted by jejune at 1:10 PM on March 18, 2008

"Moment of discovery"? "Recollectionfreude"?
posted by Ogre Lawless at 2:25 PM on March 18, 2008

It could more or less be catalogued as an Aha-erlebnis, but not quite. A special variety, you could say.

I support the suggestions of Eureka:
"Hēurēka is the 1st person singular perfect indicative active of the Greek verb heuriskein, (Greek εὑρίσκειν) meaning "to find"; it means "I have found it", or more accurately, "I am in a state of having found it". The English version of the word is pronounced /jʊˈriːkə/; in ancient Greek ηὕρηκα (later εὕρηκα) would have been pronounced [ˈhεʷrεːka] in both former and later forms, while the modern Greek pronunciation is [ˈevrika]."
posted by lioness at 7:03 PM on March 30, 2008

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